This Week Proved To Be A Standard Summer Week On Broadway, With Musicals Exceedingly Outperforming Straight Plays At The Box Office.
A Summer Of Musicals
In the week ending July 6, 2014, only 4 out of the 30 shows playing on Broadway are considered to be straight plays, and one of those – Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill – is really a play with music. Based on the box office figures, this seems to be for good reason, as the plays grossed far less than the musicals over the course of the week.
While many plays were on Broadway in the months leading up to the Tony Awards, most of them have closed by this point in the summer. Though Lady Day has just announced an extension until September 21, 2014, the rest of the plays are not slated to be on for much longer.
"The Cripple Of Inishmaan" And "Of Mice And Men" Set To Close
The Cripple of Inishmaan starring Daniel Radcliffe, which only brought in $467,389 this past week, will close on July 20, 2014, and Of Mice and Men starring James Franco, which grossed $755,356 last week, will close on July 27, 2014.
The last of these plays, The Realistic Joneses, played its final performance this past week on July 6, 2014, finishing with a modest weekly gross of $420,300, which was only 58.65% of its gross potential. On the other hand, the grosses for musicals were quite healthy last week.
Broadway Musicals Performing Well In The Box Office
The frontrunners were, as expected, The Lion King with a gross of $2,066,169, and Wicked with a gross of $1,988,092. Just behind those two megahits was The Book of Mormon with a gross of $1,578,566, followed by a new lead contender Aladdin with a gross of $1,498,146.
This goes to show that summer on Broadway is truly a season of musicals, as theatergoers tend to be tourists who flock to the musical fare. Local New Yorkers, on the other hand, tend to get out of the city over the hot summer season, and instead prefer to attend the theatre during the fall and spring, when straight plays do much better at the box office.
“The Realistic Joneses” Was An Underappreciated Play This Season
Playing its last performance at the end of last week, The Realistic Joneses did not go out with much fanfare. It only grossed $420,300, which was actually a decrease of $7,856 from the week before. Generally, even for shows that have not done particularly well over the course of their runs, the final week shows an upswing.
However, The Realistic Joneses did not even manage to woo large audiences in their last week of performances. Not only did this show do fairly poorly at the box office, it was completely snubbed for the Tony Awards, failing to receive a single nomination. This most likely contributed to the poor box office performance at the end of the run.
Unimpressive Financials Despite Positive Reviews
Since it began performances on March 13, 2014, the highest weekly gross was $619,507. Despite these unimpressive financials, the show received very positive reviews, was selected as a New York Times critics pick, and is considered by many theatre aficionados to have broken new ground in terms of structure and content for a play on Broadway. This is further evidence that quality does not necessitate financial success in the world of theatre.The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending July 6, 2014:
|A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER||$886,839||7,295||100.54%||$121.57|
|BULLETS OVER BROADWAY||$492,009||6,682||51.24%||$73.63|
|HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH||$1,023,210||7,214||102.34%||$141.84|
|HOLLER IF YA HEAR ME||$144,773||4,726||53.17%||$30.63|
|LADY DAY AT EMERSON’S BAR & GRILL||$471,917||4,296||89.99%||$109.85|
|MOTOWN THE MUSICAL||$833,702||9,092||75.41%||$91.70|
|OF MICE AND MEN||$755,356||8,117||94.56%||$93.06|
|ROCK OF AGES||$303,796||4,049||86.81%||$75.03|
|THE BOOK OF MORMON||$1,578,566||8,752||102.63%||$180.37|
|THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN||$467,389||5,815||67.74%||$80.38|
|THE LION KING||$2,066,169||13,601||100.01%||$151.91|
|THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA||$1,001,126||11,666||90.86%||$85.82|
|THE REALISTIC JONESES||$420,300||5,792||83.03%||$72.57|